Uttar Pradesh Lokayukta Justice N.K. Mehrotra has found culture minister Subhash Pandey guilty of using his clout to grab public and private property in the state.
Pandey is the fourth minister to come under the Lokayukta’s scanner after homeopathy minister Rajesh Tripathi, dairy development minister Awadhpal Singh Yadav and labour minister Badshah Singh.
While Tripathi and Yadav have already resigned, Badshah Singh is likely to get the boot.
Pandey has been accused of grabbing several acres of land in the Kamalpur area of Jaunpur district and fraudulently transferring the land of a temple to one of his aides. The Lokayukta has ordered the Jaunpur administration to probe the charges against the minister.
Chief Minister Mayawati has shied away from punishing her corrupt ministers, but the anti-corruption movement led by Anna Hazare, forced her to make Tripathi and Yadav resign.
Subhash Pandey has been in the line of fire of the Samajwadi Party and the Bharatiya Janata Party for a while now.
The Lokayukta having him found guilty of land grabbing, has given the Opposition an opportunity to attack Mayawati.
“Eighty per cent of Mayawati’s ministers are corrupt. It is sad that she is running a government with the help of criminal and corrupt ministers. Instead of forcing her corrupt ministers to resign, she should step down,” leader of the Opposition Shivpal Singh Yadav said.